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Jennifer Westford still on PPP list, secrecy remains on parliamentary entry

Dr. Jennifer Westford.

by Zena Henry

Even as the country’s budget is expected to be presented to the nation today, the People’s Progressive Party (PPP)  was much clearer that embattled Dr. Jennifer Westford is still among  its list of parliamentarians, but remained tight-lipped about when its parliamentarians would take up their 32 seats in the National Assembly

This is because General Secretary (GS), Clement Rohee, during his regular press briefing, Monday August 1, still asked that persons wait to see when the party enters Parliament.

The former Public Service Minister Jennifer Westford is still on the party’s list, the GS confirmed. His response came denying earlier reports that she was booted as a Member of Parliament for the party. When asked if Westford was taken off the PPP list he said, “No”.

When asked if she will be in Parliament, if the party turns up in Parliament, again he said, “Wait and see. When we turn up the answer will be clear as crystal.”

Rohee noted that there has been no discussion to remove Westford from the list and no discussion has been held with any possible replacement.

When asked about image concerns given that the minister was charged for attempted larceny, while another investigation into millions of dollars is also ongoing, Rohee repeated that these persons are “innocent until proven guilty.”

“We have always maintained the position that a person is innocent until proven guilty. We don’t want to act prematurely.”

Outside of this, the PPP expressed concern about what they say is the failure of the government to actively inform the nation via the media. In his statement Rohee said the party “has noted the secrecy with which the Granger Administration has been operating,” and called on them to make several issues clear, particularly economic issues and his trips abroad where matters of national interest were believed to have been discussed.

“Granger has failed miserably at informing the people of this country on what exactly his government is doing to stimulate investment and spur growth of the Guyanese economy, which has been on the decline.” He claimed that the PPP has never failed to keep the nation updated since assuming office in 1992.

He however set aside all questions pertaining to the secrecy surrounding his party taking their seats in Parliament, their concerns of certain developments and their involvement in matters requiring their input such as the procurement commission.